news 05 Nov 13

First Synagogue Opens in Montenegro

Centuries after the first Jews are believed to have settled in Montenegro, the community has finally opened a place of worship.

Beta, Vecernje Novosti

Montenegro's only rabbi, Luciano Mose Prelevic, on Monday formally placed the Sefer Torah (the five books of Moses), in the country's first provisional synagogue, which is located in the Jewish community centre in the capital, Podgorica.

"Our goal is to preserve our faith, culture, tradition and history," Jasa Alfandari, President of the Jewish community in Montenegro, said.

Jews in Montenegro organized themselves as a citizens' association in 2011, and signing an agreement in January 2012 with the government granting them official minority status.

According to the latest data, the Jewish community in Montenegro numbers 110, but the Jewish community believes this may be an underestimate.

Alfandari said the community had received a plot of land from the local authority of Podgorica to build a proper synagogue, as well as a new cultural centre, which are expected to be completed in 2015.

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